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Your Wednesday Briefing: Putin and Xi Prepare to Meet

Russia’s president Vladimir Putin is preparing to meet with China’s leader Xi Jinping at a personal summit in Uzbekistan later this week. The talk comes at a time of weakness for both autocratic leaders as Russia suffers losses in Ukraine and China experiences an economic slowdown.

Putin will most likely go to the meeting and see Xi as a lifeline. China has emerged as a major buyer of Russian commodities, helping Moscow replenish its treasury and bear the brunt of Western sanctions. But now Russia is quickly losing steam in Ukraine and pulling out of the territory it comfortably owned just days ago.

Beijing will enter the conversation cautiously as it considers whether to double down or let Russia go through the setbacks itself. Moscow has backed its stance on Taiwan and China cannot afford a humiliating defeat.

But Beijing doesn’t want to risk Western sanctions, as the war backfires on Russia. And it has its own slowing economy to worry about: Tens of millions of people remain under pandemic lockdowns and frustration is mounting as Xi prepares to secure a third term in office next month.

Analysis: Tensions between the US and China are running high as Moscow and Beijing draw closer, a dynamic reminiscent of the Cold War, writes Jane Perlez.

india: Putin will also meet with Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, at the summit to discuss trade and food supply. Reuters reports:.

Other updates:

  • Russian shelling escalated sharply in Bakhmut, an important Ukrainian stronghold in the eastern Donbas region. Here’s a map of the invasion.

  • Clashes broke out yesterday between Armenia and Azerbaijan in the worst clashes between the countries since a war in 2020.

  • The US and UK helped Ukraine plan its rapid advance, crucially before the first snowfall.

Authorities believe the man, identified as Peter Eades, kept the wild animal as a pet, which requires a permit in Australia. Police did not respond to questions about whether he had one.

A wildlife expert said fatal kangaroo attacks are extremely uncommon, as a kangaroo’s first instinct is to flee. The animals will not attack unless they feel cornered.

Details: Ambulance personnel and the police were called to the scene, but were unable to get to the man immediately because the kangaroo was in the way, police said. Officers fatally shot the kangaroo and the man was later pronounced dead at the scene.

The Sri Lankan men’s cricket team won the Asian Cup on Sunday in the T20 format, the shortest version of the game, hours after the country won the equivalent championship in women’s netball.

Cricket: The men’s team has played a somewhat unlikely role. In an upset, it beat Pakistan to take the top spot for the first time in eight years. The tournament had been moved from Sri Lanka to UAE because of the political crises in the country.

netball: The women’s team victory was notable as the team had a limited budget to help the players cope with power cuts and fuel shortages.

Politics: Earlier this month, Sri Lanka and the IMF reached a preliminary agreement on a nearly $3 billion bailout package. Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the ousted ex-president, also returned home after fleeing the country, a sign of his family’s continued political influence.

Queen Elizabeth II passed away nearly 25 years after the shocking death of Princess Diana. But over the past quarter of a century, outrage over the monarchy has evolved into a civil, respectful period of mourning, Sarah Lyall writes.

There may be no better illustration of the change than the public’s reaction to Camilla. Once thought of as a housebreaker, she is now the revered queen consort of her husband, King Charles III.

South Korea’s dystopian drama Squid Game became a worldwide phenomenon, breaking records as Netflix’s most-watched series ever. It also made history at the Emmy Awards on Monday night.

The show’s star, Lee Jung-jae, won the Emmy for Best Actor in a Drama, the first time the award has gone to an actor in a foreign language show. The writer-director, Hwang Dong-hyuk, too won for drama directing.

“Squid Game” is the latest example of South Korea’s emergence as a cultural powerhouse, captivating international audiences with K-pop bands such as BTS, as well as hit TV shows and critically acclaimed movies – some of which also explore inequality and economic struggles. In 2020, “Parasite,” a class satire, became the first foreign language film to win the Best Picture Oscar.